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The Fabric Lab

On this fabric lab, we observed five types of fabrics and their reactions when in contact with different chemical substances. The fabrics observed, were cotton and wool (natural fabrics), polyester and nylon (synthetic fabrics). In natural fibers, the filament is composed of hair-like materials that are continuous or are in discrete elongated pieces, similar to pieces of thread, in synthetic fibers are created by forcing, usually through extrusion, fiber forming materials through holes (called spinnerets) into the air and water forming a thread, making it very easy to determine whether the fabric is either natural or synthetic.

The knitted fabrics observed in our lab were nylon, wool, polyester and rayon, cotton being the only one observed that wasn’t knitted, and every knitted had a different weave pattern, making it even easier to be identified which fabric was being analyzed. Even more helpful than weaves though, are the float patterns present in the fabrics, a float pattern is when the same pattern repeats in the fabric.

We also did the flame test, which helped us finding out whether the fabrics were synthetic or not, natural fabrics burned out while synthetic fibers, melted. A similar outcome happened in the water retention test: synthetic fibers tended to retain water much more than natural fabrics.


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